Google Next, the Google Cloud conference, just finished up. (Videos of most sessions are available online.) It left me asking a question – is Google Cloud getting better for commerce? Yes! Well, what did you expect me to say? I work at Google! But more seriously, here are my reasons why.
If you are running an open source ecommerce platform such as Magento, WooCommerce, Prestashop, Shopware, etc. then of course you can use Google servers, just like you can use the servers of any public cloud provider. Yes, Google has an increasing number of database options available, better operational support, and more! But that is not my reason for answering “yes”.
The reason I believe Google is getting better is based on industry trends and ongoing Google advancements in the areas of data management and AI.
Google has a number of well known customer products including
- Google Shopping
- Google Lens (find products from an image)
- Google Ads
But what may be less well known is Google now has product offerings directly relevant to commerce developers. Products and solutions include
These are AI based products, built upon Google’s deep AI expertise.
And this is where the industry trends come in. Beyond just a website and shopping cart, successful commerce is becoming more and more dependent on effective use of data and insights. Tools such as BigQuery (data warehousing), Data Studio (dashboarding and data visualization), Looker (business intelligence), and Vertex AI Workbench (for data scientists) are making it easier to get value from your data. Periodically dump your data into BigQuery, and a way you go!
Businesses also need to be able to quickly adapt to new purchasing surfaces and integrations. You can sell on your own website, but how about on the increasing number of marketplaces around the world? And what about via social platforms? I believe Composable Commerce patterns are future of commerce IT solutions, at least for larger businesses. That is, there are many products on the market that solve specific problems well. The challenge for businesses is to harness them, putting them together to create a holistic solution.
This is where I see Google Cloud becoming increasingly relevant. Data integration, data management at scale, and AI offerings, such as those offered by Google Cloud, are becoming increasingly easy to use. These technologies I believe will become the lifeblood of successful businesses. Technological advancement in commerce is no longer just getting your products listed on a website with a shopping cart. Expectations of customers are rising, and your business needs to rise with them.